Author Topic: Thoughts on Democracy and Discussion  (Read 777 times)

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Offline MH

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Re: Thoughts on Democracy and Discussion
« Reply #15 on: December 10, 2017, 07:54:33 pm »
If we had true leaders focussing the attention on more important things, then we would have fewer people paying attention (good) but it would be people who aren't influenced by the usual claptrap.

Offline the_squid

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Re: Thoughts on Democracy and Discussion
« Reply #16 on: December 10, 2017, 08:03:49 pm »
If we had true leaders focussing the attention on more important things, then we would have fewer people paying attention (good) but it would be people who aren't influenced by the usual claptrap.

I don’t think you’ve made the case that democracy is “worse”.

When did the Conservatives ever take money out of politics federally?

Offline bcsapper

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Re: Thoughts on Democracy and Discussion
« Reply #17 on: December 10, 2017, 08:06:51 pm »
I disagree. In the past you had no choice but to accept what you were told by the media because there was no other way for people to know otherwise. Now we have choices and the bias of the traditional sources has been exposed. It did not suddenly start and there was no 'golden age' of trustworthy media. We were just naive.

Maybe it was because I grew up in the UK and never had a tv until I was nine, and then it only had two channels.  There just wasn't room for them to lie to us, never mind the will.

Edit>  Well, except for that spaghetti thing...
« Last Edit: December 10, 2017, 08:08:27 pm by bcsapper »
Time for bed said Zebedee...

Offline TimG

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Re: Thoughts on Democracy and Discussion
« Reply #18 on: December 10, 2017, 08:09:57 pm »
I think we're all guilty of doing that.  And we all like to think that our values & pet policies are determined by the facts, but that's often not true.
Why should values driven by facts? Values are philosophical constructs. For example, someone can oppose abortion because they see the value of a soon-to-be human life to be more important than the rights of the mother. That is not a question of facts.

And yes we all engage in motivated reasoning where we attempt to justify ones values based on facts. But that is wrong headed. The primary reason people do it is because they are unwilling to accept that others do not share their values and attempt to argue that the "values" are actually based on facts. It is self-deception that fools no one and leads to conflict.

Offline TimG

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Re: Thoughts on Democracy and Discussion
« Reply #19 on: December 10, 2017, 08:15:45 pm »
And yet these same people insist that there is a 'Canada' with 'Canadian Values'.  Separating out an area in which details can be discussed, and trade-offs can be proposed would be a sea-change and huge leap in actually making 'politics' where before there was grandstanding.
Shouting "Canadian Values" is a rhetorical tool used to suppress the opinions of people with different values that the speaker has. We need to move beyond the quaint concept of "shared values" and accept that we all have very different values and need to share a society. How do we do that?

IMO, we can do that by leaving as much as possible to the choice of the individual.

Offline Gorgeous Graham

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Re: Thoughts on Democracy and Discussion
« Reply #20 on: December 10, 2017, 09:07:46 pm »
Why should values driven by facts? Values are philosophical constructs. For example, someone can oppose abortion because they see the value of a soon-to-be human life to be more important than the rights of the mother. That is not a question of facts.

Yes that's exactly my point.

Quote
And yes we all engage in motivated reasoning where we attempt to justify ones values based on facts. But that is wrong headed. The primary reason people do it is because they are unwilling to accept that others do not share their values and attempt to argue that the "values" are actually based on facts. It is self-deception that fools no one and leads to conflict.

Yes I think that's true.  But there's also nothing wrong with trying to justify a value (which is simply an idea) by using facts, that's argument 101, but the danger is when you selectively ignore facts to the contrary, and are too stubborn to change your views/values based on opposing evidence or logic because it's contrary to your preconceived notions.
I can tell how good of a person you are by how you treat the people you disagree with.

Offline TimG

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Re: Thoughts on Democracy and Discussion
« Reply #21 on: December 10, 2017, 09:59:56 pm »
Yes I think that's true.  But there's also nothing wrong with trying to justify a value (which is simply an idea) by using facts, that's argument 101, but the danger is when you selectively ignore facts to the contrary, and are too stubborn to change your views/values based on opposing evidence or logic because it's contrary to your preconceived notions.
Using facts to argue values will only get you so far. By their nature values are questions of faith/belief and cannot be justified on facts alone. Sometimes people would be better off simply arguing that they support a position because it aligns with their values instead of trying to rationalize their values. The trouble for most people is arguing from values means you have to accept that others will not share your values and they have to be accommodated which can be seen as abandoning their values. However, agreeing to disagree on values is the only way this society can function and it is the only way to break the cycle of polarization that we are trapped in.

Offline MH

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Re: Thoughts on Democracy and Discussion
« Reply #22 on: December 11, 2017, 05:42:04 am »
I don’t think you’ve made the case that democracy is “worse”.

When did the Conservatives ever take money out of politics federally?

I don't think I was trying to make the case that democracy is 'worse' than other systems but that there is more fighting, and more frustration, and more noise than before.  I concur that it's hard to quantify/qualify that.  But do you disagree ?

I believe the Conservatives, early on, moved to reduce corporate donations as the Liberals were a greater benefactor of those.  I'm working from memory here.

Offline MH

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Re: Thoughts on Democracy and Discussion
« Reply #23 on: December 11, 2017, 05:59:06 am »
  How do we do that? IMO, we can do that by leaving as much as possible to the choice of the individual.

The questions of 'Individual Choice' and 'Individual Obligation' will, however, be determined by the collective.  There has never been a society where there is no obligation between members, and there can't be.

Offline MH

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Re: Thoughts on Democracy and Discussion
« Reply #24 on: December 11, 2017, 06:02:12 am »
  However, agreeing to disagree on values is the only way this society can function and it is the only way to break the cycle of polarization that we are trapped in.

That is only half of it.  We also have to agree to agree on some values:

"live and let live"
"meritocracy"
"help people to help themselves"
"share the benefits of progress"

Off the top of my head, you should get basic agreement on things like that.  Of course, they're meaningless without details but so are the 'agree to disagree' values.

Offline TimG

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Re: Thoughts on Democracy and Discussion
« Reply #25 on: December 11, 2017, 07:50:57 am »
Off the top of my head, you should get basic agreement on things like that.  Of course, they're meaningless without details but so are the 'agree to disagree' values.
Yeah - I was oversimplifying since deferring to individual choice is a value that has to be shared. Plus there are bunch of things which have to be set collectively no matter what such as immigration or defence policy. OTOH, deferring to individual choice as much a practical is a useful guideline.

Offline the_squid

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Re: Thoughts on Democracy and Discussion
« Reply #26 on: December 11, 2017, 04:10:15 pm »
I don't think I was trying to make the case that democracy is 'worse' than other systems but that there is more fighting, and more frustration, and more noise than before.  I concur that it's hard to quantify/qualify that.  But do you disagree ?

Yes, worse than before...   I got that, but didn’t finish my sentence.

I’m not convinced that democracy (in Canada?  USA?  The world?) is any worse than it was in the past (10 years?  50 years?).  I actually believe it has gotten better in Canada than it was with the introduction of the Charter not so long ago.

Can you clarify when and where has gotten worse?

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I believe the Conservatives, early on, moved to reduce corporate donations as the Liberals were a greater benefactor of those.  I'm working from memory here.

No.   Upon winning the election, they immediately reversed the funding model that took the money out of politics when they scrapped the tax funding per vote for political parties.  They went back to the old system of private, corporate and union donations to fund political parties.

Offline MH

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Re: Thoughts on Democracy and Discussion
« Reply #27 on: December 11, 2017, 06:41:12 pm »
I’m not convinced that democracy (in Canada?  USA?  The world?) is any worse than it was in the past (10 years?  50 years?).  I actually believe it has gotten better in Canada than it was with the introduction of the Charter not so long ago.

Can you clarify when and where has gotten worse?
 

Well, to be honest I am not 100% convinced either.  It DOES strike me as one of those things people say as in "things used to be so much better".  Before I follow this line of inquiry, are you *somewhat* inclined to think things are worse ?

Offline the_squid

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Re: Thoughts on Democracy and Discussion
« Reply #28 on: December 11, 2017, 07:36:44 pm »
Well, to be honest I am not 100% convinced either.  It DOES strike me as one of those things people say as in "things used to be so much better".  Before I follow this line of inquiry, are you *somewhat* inclined to think things are worse ?

Worse where compared to what?

Offline MH

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Re: Thoughts on Democracy and Discussion
« Reply #29 on: December 11, 2017, 07:53:02 pm »
Worse where compared to what?

Compared to 1960, 1980, 2000 ?